Shuttle mission to service Hubble

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Elphaba, May 13, 2009.

  1. Elphaba

    Elphaba Defying Gravity...

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    The shuttle is nearing Hubble, preparing to get ready to do some major overhaul. CNN is carrying a live stream from their main page, and NASA tv as well:

    www.cnn.com

    http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/

    Somewhere in the field of blue shirts drifting in and out of mission control during this mission is my dear J... we are so excited about finally getting Hubble overhauled and upgraded... (Ok, he is stressed because this is a super intense mission... but still, success of this mission means a lot for us)


    Keep the Atlantis crew in your thoughts and prayers... their work load is tedious and heavy, and right now there have been some injuries that occurred to the heat tiles, during lift off. (I think 3 tiles were affected...) They don't think it is very serious, but just the smallest of nicks are worrisome in regards of getting them down from orbit without something like Columbia happening. We want to get our astronauts back on the ground safe and sound!

    ETA: ok, I got it wrong... they are currently showing Houston Mission Control... J is at Goddard... once they start doing cam viewing of Goddard mission control, he will be part of the blue sea of shirts.
     
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  3. Elphaba

    Elphaba Defying Gravity...

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    Nearing 11 a.m., they are currently setting up for the retrieval with the robotic arm... unfortunately, since NASA only popped 7 astronauts into orbit, they are obviously one short in being able to get attention from the Octomom following crowd... and given that none of the astronauts have controversial nude pics out there, The Donald and his favorite pageant girl of the moment, are not losing their attention with the media following crowd. :)

    Seriously, I'm shocked that very few people seem to care about the mission.
     
  4. GolferChick

    GolferChick Member

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    Elphaba, I agree that many people these days are not even aware when the shuttle launches. I worked on the program for a short time when it first began - on Columbia. I have a sister who works there (she is a planner on Endeavour). Yes, this is a very, very important mission for Hubble and much more complicated in terms of the shuttle's orbit than those going to the space station. Godspeed Atlantis on your critical mission!!!
     
  5. Funny Face

    Funny Face Inactive

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    Elpfaba and Golfer Chick,

    I agree that there seems to be less interest in space missions, especially during the last 10 or so years. It's a shame that the general pubic is not aware of the modern conviences and scientic contributions the Shuttle Misssions have contributed to their everyday life. Think of teflon, freeze dried food vacuum sealed food, avionic advances, telecommunications (think cell phones, cable and dish TV) and the computer industries (like micro processors) growth.

    I worked for 30 years in aerospace. I started off as an assembler, transfered into process engineering and worked my way up to senior management. I've
    been to Cape Kennedy numerous times to both work on either the space craft on board or the shuttle itself.

    There is nothing like seeing a launch and feeling the tremdous vibration in your chest when it takes off.

    Thank you both for the memories!
    Funny Face
     
  6. scandi

    scandi New Member

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    My, what a great crew we have assembled here for the last flight of the Shuttle. Ya Ya ;}

    Elphaba has a giftted scientific mind and the eye to catch the rays of the sun falling on a single snowflake with her camera. She is so awesome as a fellow poster.l

    FunnyFace and GolferChick, how fortunate to have you both here for this historic flight with all you bring to the discussion and your work with NASA.

    I am almost overwhelmed myself, as when the first Shuttle was launched, around the time Mt St Helen's blew her top, I was working at Weyerhauser in their main plant in Camas Washington.They brought in TV's. shut off the machines and closed shop so we could all watch her blast off. What a day. I will never forget it!

    On the whisper of a prayer I wish them God Speed in their mission tonight. I know there is an approx 12" length of tile that was badly chipped and also a dent popped in the ship when it went up. I hope this will be either fixed or a non issue for the flight.

    I couldn't believe the damage a piece of sand could do as floating garbage, hitting a windshield. Amazing. The last I heard they were at the Hubble, and that was hours ago.

    xox
     
  7. GolferChick

    GolferChick Member

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    I am watching the EVA streaming on CNN -- wow, these guys are good. Hanging out tethered to the payload bay, fightin' with a bolt on Hubble!!

    Shuttle launches are so incredible -- I've had the priviledge of seeing two live at the VIP/press area at KSC. You see the billows of smoke, the shuttle starts to move upward and then it shoots off the pad -- gorgeous!!

    I remember one day when I had to go check some tiles on Columbia to make sure they were in spec - they were out near the wing, under the American flag on the side of the orbiter. I literally had to stop and just take in all in -- I remember thinking that I wish every American could experience what I was seeing. On television, you don't really get a good sense of how big the orbiter and shuttle is. With the program ending in 2010, every flight is so important. I hope to get home to Brevard County to see one more launch live!

    My sis says that the Ares/Constellation program is having its problems -- I just hope our nation does not abandon our manned space mission. I'm praying for the mission's complete success, the tiles, and a safe return home of Atlantis and her crew!! Enjoy watching the mission.

    P.S. You can find a complete mission schedule at this link...
    http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/mission_schedule.html
     
  8. scandi

    scandi New Member

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    Thanks GolferChick, Have you heard any news this morning about the damage to the shuttle? All I have heard is they are about to take a walk. LOL Thanks for the link ;}
     
  9. Buzz Mills

    Buzz Mills New Member

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    Hey Scandi; great to see you. The Hubble was built at Lockheed Sunnyvale, so i got to drop in on it periodically. I also rented a room to a young tech who was here from Fairchild Maryland to work on the Hubble; so I hung out with any number of the people who worked on the project. I also mentored a young engineer, who worked for me, in my field of telemetry, and he became one of the Hubble telemetry software people. I made more trips to the Cape, on the D-5 program, than I cared to; lots of good friends from there. The Hubble has just been an awesome look into our universe.
     
  10. scandi

    scandi New Member

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    Back at 'cha Buzz :blowkiss: Now I'm gong to have to look up telemetry to learn about it. I think it is spacial relationships, how one thing relates to another, but not really sure. What I am sure of tho is you would be an awesome mentor. LOL Ya Ya

    This will be exciting to watch. I just went to the link from GolferChick and could read there for hours. Fascinating! xox
     
  11. ljwf22

    ljwf22 Reality continues to ruin my life.

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  12. GolferChick

    GolferChick Member

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    Scandi,
    I checked in with my sis who works at KSC and with the engineering staff. They believe everything will be okay with the tile damage. (I don't like where they are located out on that wing...)
     
  13. GolferChick

    GolferChick Member

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    This section (The Flame Trench) on Florida Today, the local Brevard County newspaper is following every step of the mission.

    http://www.floridatoday.com/content/blogs/space/

    Some great information on the history of Hubble. (BTW, how awesome is it that we get to see pictures of the universe through Hubble that no other generation on earth has ever been able to see!!)

    Enjoy!!
     
  14. seatoad

    seatoad New Member

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    Hi, I'm kinda new here, usually just do a lot of reading, very little posting. My husband actually is an engineer here in CT. and he works on a lot of the space hardware. Mostly the life support backpacks on the spacesuit, he worked on the space potty at one time. Funny story: Once when my kids were really little, he called to say he was going to get a chance to meet some of the astronauts. I asked him to pick up milk for the babies before he headed out , but he was so excited , he left the milk on top of the car and drove away. We never let him forget it either.
     
  15. GolferChick

    GolferChick Member

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    Welcome SeaToad!! Great story! The work he and his colleagues do on the spacesuits is so important -- think about it -- these astronauts would not be able to do this long of a spacewalk and work on the Hubble without those critical, live-sustaining backpacks.
     
  16. scandi

    scandi New Member

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    Ta for that. It has to be a concern as does all the junk floating around out there in space. They said it is the most dangerous mission so far just because of that. I don't mean to put a negative twist on anything, just relating what we have heard on the news.

    I haven't seen anything about this on TV this morning as Capitol Hill/Pelosi has dominated the news :confused: xox
     
  17. Elphaba

    Elphaba Defying Gravity...

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    I am happy to see that some of my fellow WS'rs are following the mission. Welcome to WS, Seatoad. :D
     
  18. Buzz Mills

    Buzz Mills New Member

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    European scientists launch new space telescope

    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – As American astronauts overhauled the aging Hubble, European scientists launched an even larger space telescope toward a far-flung orbit, hoping to help answer two questions: How did the cosmos begin and are we alone in it? "We are seeking the origins of the universe," said Jean-Yves Le Gall, chairman and CEO of French satellite launcher Arianespace, which on Thursday launched the Herschel space telescope and a companion spacecraft from French Guiana.

    The Herschel space telescope, the largest ever launched, will observe chunks of ice and dust left over from the formation of planets, playing a "complementary" role to the versatile Hubble, said Andreas Diekmann, director of the European Space Agency's Washington office. A companion spacecraft called Planck separated from the Ariane rocket soon after launch on a mission to measure radiation from the Big Bang. Unlike Hubble, which has become famous for its breathtaking images of the heavens, Herschel and Planck work in non-visible wavelengths of light. But they will provide scientists with crucial information about planet and star formation.

    The Herschel telescope will allow scientists to study the birth of stars and galaxies and analyze the dust-clouds around stars. Astronomers will also look for the presence of water in deep space. "One could get an impression on how life began in the universe and how widely it might be distributed, or whether we are totally alone," said Martin Harwit, a Washington-based mission scientist for Herschel. The telescope could also pinpoint molecules that serve as building blocks for primitive organisms. "It will also be looking at very large distances across the universe, where the first stars and galaxies were beginning to form and tell us how those processes took place," Harwit said.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090515/ap_on_sc/cb_largest_telescope
     
  19. Marthatex

    Marthatex New Member

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    Sounds like they had a pretty tough time today on their mission (installing ____ into something - that's about how space literate I am); but it took 5 hours or so because something didn't fit right.

    It must be a beautiful view; but I would be scared out of my mind if I were up there. I will be glad when they are back safe and sound!!
     
  20. Elphaba

    Elphaba Defying Gravity...

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    As I see it: the more mechanical "eyes" aimed towards the cosmos, the more we learn. Go ESA!
     
  21. Marthatex

    Marthatex New Member

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    The Shuttle landed in California! They are safe!

    I'm so relieved; I was worried about this one. GO USA!!!!
     

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